Man, you don't even have to make up powers for supers if you just copycat nature, this is awesome. Spring loaded leaping:
The biomechanics of frogs jumping have mystified scientists: But new research shows that the amphibians coil their tendons like springs before hurling themselves into the air
'Muscles alone couldn't produce jumps that good,' said Henry Astley, who studies the biomechanics of frog jumping at Brown University.
In a paper published in Biology Letters, Astley and Thomas Roberts, associate professor of biology, show that the key to frogs' leaping lies in their stretchy tendons.
More...Before jumping, the leg muscle shortens, loading energy into the tendon, which then recoils like a spring to propel the frog up, up and away. Even though as much as a quarter of a frog's body mass is in its legs, it would be physically incapable of jumping as far without the tendon's services.
'In order to get truly exceptional jumping performance, you need some sort of elastic structure,' said Astley, a fourth-year graduate student in Roberts's lab in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology.
Edible Frog leaping from water to catch damselfly. X-Ray analysis show that muscles transfer energy into the creatures' tendons just before they jump - letting them jump far higher than their leg muscles would allow
The pair implanted metal beads into the shin bone, ankle bone and leg muscle of four frogs and then recorded their leaps with 3-D X-ray video technology developed at Brown.
The video, filmed at 500 frames per second and displaying the jump about 17 times slower than normal, tracks the changes in the leg muscle's length and joint movement before, during and after a jump.
As the frog readies itself to leap, its calf muscle shortens. After about 100 milliseconds, the calf muscle stops moving, and the energy has been fully loaded into the stretched tendon.
At the moment the frog jumps, the tendon, which wraps around the ankle bone, releases its energy, much like a catapult or archer's bow, causing a very rapid extension of the ankle joint that propels the frog forward. The entire jump — from preparation to leap — lasts about a fifth of a second, the experiments showed. Other frog species jump much faster.
'It's the first time we've really gotten the inner workings, that we've put all the pieces (to frog jumping) together,' Astley said. 'We now have a clearer idea what's going on.'